Last night’s opening segment: Way back when, Chris Matthews’ appalling conduct almost got somebody killed.
For details, see our previous post.
During that era, two years of Matthews’ appalling conduct sent George W. Bush to the White House. People are dead all over the world because of the things Matthews did.
Our “press culture” being a manifest fraud, nobody cared about this. Manifestly, the children care about making big scratch and becoming big famous TV stars.
As a result, Matthews’ ridiculous conduct continues right up to the present. Consider the pitiful opening segment from last evening’s Hardball.
To watch the full segment, click this.
Matthews interviewed Mike Kelly, a columnist for the Bergen Record, and Matt Katz, a reporter with WNYC radio. This produced a 15-minute opening segment which, in typical Matthews fashion, made a joke of the most basic facts.
Let’s start with an important fact which Matthews didn’t even try to establish:
On Saturday, Kelly wrote a 1600-word column which seemed to say that Port Authority policemen told backed-up drivers that Mayor Sokolich was responsible for the traffic jams in Fort Lee. If true, this suggests weird, apparently politicized behavior on the part of these officers.
That said, how many stalled drivers were told to blame the mayor? In Kelly’s opening statement to Matthews, he made a strange-sounding statement:
KELLY (2/17/14): This has been one of the mysteries, as I said, that’s been lingering around this controversy almost since the day it broke. And that is, if this in fact is political retribution, how did the message on political retribution get delivered to the mayor of Fort Lee?Can that possibly be what Kelly meant? During the lane closings, tens of thousands of drivers were delayed in Fort Lee on each of four separate days. But in the highlighted statement, Kelly seemed to say that “dozens” of drivers were instructed to call the mayor or the Fort Lee police.
And what I was able to put together was, simply by connecting the dots and interviewing some motorists, and also talking to people in Fort Lee and what actually they heard when the calls came into the police station and into Borough Hall. And what happened here was a similar message that kept repeating itself over and over again, and that was police instructing motorists to call the borough of Fort Lee and specifically to complain to the mayor.
Now I got to tell you, Chris, we don’t know exactly how many motorists were instructed to do this. The best estimate that I could come up with is that, that dozens were instructed this way. But what’s key here, what’s absolutely key, is the similarity of the message. And that’s why, that’s why the legislative committee in Trenton that is investigating this is taking this so seriously.
That could hardly serve as evidence of an organized propaganda campaign. But Matthews didn’t ask Kelly to elaborate or explain his statement. In standard fashion, he simply powered ahead with the preapproved script.
By the way, should anyone believe the things Kelly says? We would advise you to proceed with caution, based on a remarkable trio of statements which followed.
The sequence started with Katz. In his first exchange with Matthews, he made a peculiar statement:
KATZ: Thanks to reporting from your own Steve Kornacki this weekend, we know that one of these [Port Authority] police officers was actually escorting David Wildstein, who ordered the lanes closed—actually escorting him around that first day of the lane closures. Now, we don`t know if this officer—In that passage, you see how easily journalists can start speculating, on the basis of exactly no evidence, that some low-ranking shlub may be “complicit in this whole scheme.”
MATTHEWS: Are you solid on that, Matt? Are you solid on that right now? Are we all solid on that? Do we know that for a fact?
KATZ: We know that—we know that from the e-mails that have been released, and the text messages, that this lieutenant was texting, this lieutenant in the Port Authority police was texting back and forth with David Wildstein that morning.
MATTHEWS: I saw damn good reporting, because it’s the e-mails that, I’ll be picked up at 7:28, 7:30. It’s very precise about the guy coming to get him. You’re right! So what you think it tells us?
KATZ: We know that maybe—I mean, it could tell us one of two things. It could tell us that this officer was just escorting an official around from the Port Authority because he thought there was a legitimate traffic study, which is the excuse they used after the fact for these lane closures. Or perhaps he was complicit in this whole scheme.
Katz speculates with great ease. That said, we were struck by a different statement.
Say what? The traffic study “is the excuse they used after the fact for these lane closures? (Our emphasis)
At best, that statement was highly misleading. As he continued, Katz revised and extended his peculiar remark:
MATTHEWS (continuing directly): What do you make of the fact— What do you make of the fact that the police union guy here coming up with the idea of a traffic study after they already had the traffic jams? I mean, that seems like collusion to me in, basically, mayhem and mischief.Duh! Let’s assume that the traffic study was a cover story, a hoax. Even if so, the cover story was plainly developed before the lane closings—“before this actually happened.”
Why would you want to come up with an excuse for something that’s already happening when you know it has nothing do with reality? Why would anybody want to do that? Who’s benefited or served by that?
KATZ: There were documents indicating that there was some sort of traffic study— Well, I mean, not like, you know, very limited, but I mean, there might have been a cover story being developed before this actually happened. So we don’t know the complicity of all the officers. We do know that the police union endorsed Christie, which was unusual among uniformed police and fire in this election.
Bridge director Cedrick Fulton and bridge general manager Rob Durando both testified to this chronology at some length on December 9. According to their sworn testimony, the “traffic study,” real or hoax, was being planned and discussed both before and during the lane closings.
The traffic study, real or hoax, was not devised “after the fact.” Unless you watched Hardball last night, in which case you then saw columnist Kelly go out of his way to say this:
KELLY: Just to get back to one thing. The whole traffic study explanation was developed after the fact. There was a lot of concern—if you go through those e-mails that circulated ahead of time, you don’t see references to how this was going to be a legitimate traffic study. So a major question mark has to really be placed beside anything that says traffic study at this point in time, and particularly now, because the whole idea of a traffic study has been basically discredited.Why would Kelly say that? It’s certainly true that “a major question mark has to really be placed beside anything that says traffic study.” It’s entirely possible that the alleged traffic study was always just a hoax.
That said, why would Kelly say that “the whole traffic study explanation was developed after the fact?” Plainly, that seems to be false.
Plainly, that statement seemed to be false. Matthews just blustered ahead.
Can we talk? Facts have rarely played any role in the clown show Hardball. Hardball has always been about propaganda, about preapproved standard tales.
On Hardball, preferred story lines have always run roughshod over the most basic facts. Truth to tell, Matthews rarely shows any sign of knowing any facts.
Back in the day, Matthews endlessly toyed with most basic facts to improve his ugly claims about Clinton, Clinton and Gore. Now, he’s lying on our behalf, running roughshod over the facts in pursuit of Vile Christie and Them.
That said, MSNBC viewers are routinely given the impression that the “whole traffic study explanation” was “developed after the fact.” Rachel Maddow spends endless hours on Fort Lee, but she constantly gives her viewers this false impression.
As far as we know, Maddow has never reported the basic chronology concerning the traffic study explanation. We don’t know why Maddow keeps choosing to withhold such basic facts. But the bogus chronology she keeps selling makes it easier to assert that other Christie people surely must have known that the study was just a hoax.
Back in the day, Matthews almost got somebody killed doing that. As always, we hope our dearest darling’s money is spending real good.
Back to Matthews: Why is this horrible person still on the air, assisted by devoted caregivers? Within what kind of intellectual culture can such an arrangement exist?
Quick question for readers wishing to engage in a serious discussion.ReplyDelete
If there was no legitimate traffic study, does it matter whether they came up with the use of "a study" before or after the closures?
We have the governor's deputy chief of staff calling for "traffic problems."
We have Wildstein ordering Durando and Fulton to close lanes for a "study."
We the spokesman for the PA telling the Bergen Record Road Warrior that it was a "traffic safety pattern study."
We have the PA executive director firing off an angry e-mail ordering the lanes reopened, saying it is against all the principles of the PA and probably illegal.
We have the PA deputy executive director telling the Assembly committee that it was a "fairness" study.
We have Fulton and Durando testifying that this was not like any real traffic study, especially one involving lane closures.
We have Foye flatly saying it wasn't a traffic study.
But forget all that. The only question now is "before or after", and the key culprit is Chris Matthews.
These people have not said it was no study. They have said it was not conducted the way a usual study would have been done. That is a huge difference.Delete
Go read the testimony for yourself. Stop taking Somerby's word for what it says.Delete
Then come back here and apologize for being such a fool.
I have read the testimony. Calling people fools for disagreeing with you is no way to have a discussion about anything.Delete
I think the "fool' reference was to actions rather than inherent character. Kind of like the way Somerby referes to actions of Madddow or Matthews, not their inherent character.Delete
If there is any doubt in your mind that Fulton, Durando and Foye did NOT say this was no study, then you haven't read the testimony. You have read only Somerby's version of it.Delete
Oh, but I suppose that since a PA "spokesman" called it a study, and Baroni called it a study, that still means it "could" be a study and they weren't simply shovelling bullshit.
"They have said it was not conducted the way a usual study would have been done."Delete
Ergo, it was not a "study". Call it a watermelon if you wish, but please stop with the pretense that it could have been a study.
They did not say it was not a study. You are stretching what was said to fit your preferred understanding.Delete
"They did not say it was not a study."Delete
Are you really reduced to arguing like this? Save it for your next high school debate.
"Call it a watermelon if you wish, but please stop with the pretense that it could have been a study."Delete
Which sets my fevered mind racing!
Suppose, for example, Chris Christie held an apple in his hand and called it a watermelon. Now supposed Rachel Maddow or Chris Matthew, or both, said that very evening how ridiculous it was to call an apple a watermelon.
Care to predict the reaction of Somerby? Or his tribe trying to defend it, accusing others of not having a mind open to all the possibilities including that watermelons could be small and red even though they look like an apple, taste like an apple, and came off of an apple tree.
We must still wait until all the evidence is known before we can conclude that it is an apple, since it has not been disproved, on a journalistic basis, that it is not a watermelon.
@4:10 This is not high school, nor is it any kind of debate. This is real life and the things said on MSNBC about people affect them. Selectively choosing to hear what supports your beliefs, stretching words beyond what they mean in context, ignoring statements that conflict with your personal theory -- these are not good ways to reason. I personally don't care what you believe and I am not in a debate with you. I care whether people are treated fairly by the media and I care whether liberal Media manipulate viewers in the ways Fox does, to increase ratings, keep people busy with nonsense, or whatever their ultimate purpose may be. I dislike propaganda and consider it incompatible with the free press essential to ensuring our liberty. You can treat that as something to be stomped into the ground for entertainment purposes, but I doubt you will like the kind of society that results from such actions.Delete
I simply don't understand why people don't see that once Bridget Kelly's email to Wildstein surfaced the "traffic study" ploy was rendered null and void. The jig was up. They knew it right away. Why can't Bob understand this? There is simply no plausible or implausible explanation for Kelly's involvement in a "traffic study".ReplyDelete
Because her email was ambiguous in meaning.Delete
Do you really think Somerby cares as much about the truth in this or any other issue or controversy as he does beating up on MSNBC hosts?Delete
The Capt. Queeg analogy was quite appropriate. Bob really thinks it matters if the perps came up with "traffic study" before or after.
In case you are not being sarcastic, 1:36, Wildstein didn't think Kelly's e-mail was ambiguous in meaning.Delete
How on earth can you know what Wildstein understood from Kelly's email. He did understand it because he said so, but what exactly did he understand? You cannot know that because he isn't saying.Delete
Yes, indeed 1:53, presuming a 40 something gubernatorial deputy chief of staff wanted to launch her career in traffic planning with a 50 something member of Bloggers Anonymous, they would pick the busiest bridge on the planet fed by multiple traffic sources into a toll booth plaza, and would naturally refer to it in layman's jargon referencing the single place name where their study would cause a modest degree of discomfort.Delete
I mean, that is exactly how I would do it and how I would talk about it in early morning e-mail.
"Because her email was ambiguous in meaning."Delete
I give up.
Again, whether it's ambiguous or clear as a bell, she simply has no plausible connection to anything concerning traffic in the town of Fort Lee. She was Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor. Supervising Port Authority personnel is not in her job description. Are you stupid? When her "ambiguous" email was made public she was shit-canned with 24 hours, and thrown under the bus by Christie. He then got in the drivers seat and ran over her a few more times for good measure. She is refusing to comply with subpoenas. We're six months into this and we still don't have an answer to the most basic question. Why was this done? wtf is wrong with you people?
We just endured Jamzilla in Los Angeles, in which the entire freeway was closed for a few days, presumably for legitimate reasons. Someone could very well have initiated that by sending an email saying "Time to create traffic problems on the West side." It would have been tongue in cheek or flippant but those receiving such an email would have understood that it was time to initiate the planned disruption of traffic. Again, for legitimate purposes. There is nothing inherent in that sentence that implies the purpose of the freeway closure was illegitimate and no one receiving the message would think so either. They'd think she might be a young person speaking colloquially.Delete
In this situation, we don't know whether the lane closures were done to answer a question or to take reprisals on someone (not necessarily Sokolich or Ft Lee). It is unclear whether the study discussed ahead of the lane closures was to try to answer a longer standing complaint about the number of lanes devoted to Ft Lee (and resultant backups) or whether it was a cover up for some other purpose. Because we don't know that key information, we don't know whether Kelley's remark was being flippant about a good-faith study, however clumsy in its execution, or whether she was passing along instructions from Christie to mess with Ft Lee (and Sokolich) for some reason, albeit no satisfactory motive has yet been suggested.
Some of you wish to conclude that you know what she meant and what the reasons were for the closures and feel sure any study was just a cover up, whether concocted before or after the fact. Others have greater respect for what we do not yet know and wish to reserve judgment about things until more information is available.
If you cannot understand that, you are also unlikely to understand ways in which rushing to judgment reflects bias and partisanship, in your own thinking and in that of the journalists who are supposed to be more objective in their reporting. I do not know what to say to someone who genuinely does not understand this explanation except that it might help you to go back to school and study critical thinking or take some science classes (they teach you to withhold judgment, keep an open mind, use evidence to test assumptions, etc.).
Just because it is unclear to you doesn't mean other people lack functioning brains.Delete
But since you want to compare the Fort Lee lane closures to LA's Jamzilla, might I inquire whether motorists were warned in advance? Were these lane closures timed at rush hour during a work week, or for a holiday weekend? Were they of indeterminate duration, or was there a beginning and an end point, and a pretty strict deadline?
As you explore the answers to these questions, perhaps you can see the difference between a "real" traffic study involving lane closures, and simply closing lanes for a purpose that remains unknown because of official stonewalling.
And if you can't, physician heal thyself. Go bat to school and study critical thinking, or take some science classes (they teach you to follow evidence where it leads and dismiss bullshit.)
As a matter of fact, there are some people out there who think the world was created as is, 6.000 years ago and that the globe isn't warming. Did those science classes you took require you to keep an open mind about that? If so, you should ask for your money back.
Except for the fact that Bridget Ann Kelly has no plausible connection to the fucking Port Authority, traffic studies or traffic in the town of Fort Lee. Until you seriously address that little problem, we're getting nowhere fast.Delete
Other than that, yeah, anything is possible.
Except that traffic studies are done for policy makers and people outside of traffic departments because the answers to questions are needed by decision makers who will use the information in their own jobs (hers was intergovenmental relations). You make it sound like the only people who would use census data are the census takers, not politicians or administrators, for example.Delete
Anon@2:52: No one is claiming the study was properly done. There is a wide gap between "it was a properly done study" and "it wasn't a study at all". LA has a long history of messing with traffic and does it pretty well. There have been fiascos in the past, with bad political consequences. There is room to believe that a study may have been intended in Ft. Lee but incompetently carried out. Arguing that keeping an open mind makes one a creationist is ridiculous. If there were as much evidence about the lane closures as there is about the age of the earth, I wouldn't be arguing that there is insufficient information. You seem to be having trouble diffeentiating evidence from imagination (especially wishful thinking). You seem to think that if you can concoct a plausible story, consistent with your political bias, that must be what actually happened. What seems true is not necessarily what IS true.Delete
Can you please answer mm's question? If this were "a study at all" then why did the order come from Christie's deputy chief of staff?Delete
And please stop pretending that her order was "ambiguous."
I also asked questions concerning L.A.'s Jamzilla that have gone unanwered.
And while you are making things up, go ahead and pretend that the Port Authority and all their professionals are merely "incompetent" and don't know how to conduct a traffic study.
In fact, there were very clear protocols in place, all of which were violated when David Wildstein received his "traffic problems" order from Bridget Kelly and acted accordingly.
I did answer this. The answer is: Because she was interested in the answer to the question the study was meant to address. Because she wanted to know whether closing lanes would improve traffic flow across the bridge. Because people were complaining that Ft Lee had too many dedicated lanes and they wanted to see what would happen if some were taken away. They certainly got an answer to that question, didn't they? It probably shut up whoever was suggesting access lanes should be taken away. Who was suggesting that? Some journalists said Wildstein was talking about it in 2010 and others earlier.Delete
That casts doubt on the idea this may have been strictly for revenge of some sort. It is as plausible to me as an explanation, given that no one has suggested what Sokolich is being punished for.
I did answer the Jamzilla question. And does it escape your attention that the Port Authority professionals did not conduct the study -- Wildstein did, and he has no appropriate training for doing so, hence the incompetence. Wildstein had the authority to do what he did but not the training, so he messed it up. Incompetence is a better explanation than conspiracy, in the absence of stronger evidence that something else was going on.
"The answer is: Because she was interested in the answer to the question the study was meant to address."Delete
OK, now we get to play the role of Bob and his Merry Band!
PROVE IT! Produce a single scrap of evidence that shows that Kelly was "interested in the answer to the question the study was meant to address."
And while you are at it, please pin down the "question the study was meant to address." Was it a study of "traffic safety patterns" as told to the Bergen Record? Or was it a study of "fairness" in lane allocation as told to the Assembly committee?
You see, this is a problem with bullshitters. They shovel so much, they can't keep track.
As for the Jamzilla question, once again, was there advance notice to motorists? Was it done for a specific period of time with a deadline? Was it done during rush hour or during a holiday weekend?
Those are yes and no questions, and don't require an essay on how LA traffic engineers know how to close lanes far better than PA traffic engineers.
And no, fella. Wildstein did NOT "conduct the study." He received his orders from Kelly, then he ordered Durando and Fulton to shut down lanes and called it a "study."
And you and Somerby still think that means it could still be a "study."
Tell me this, if you wanted to screw with traffic under orders from your boss in Trenton what would you call it?
"The answer is: Because she was interested in the answer to the question the study was meant to address"Delete
Is that the answer? Or are you merely speculating far beyond the known evidence?
I am answering the question someone asked earlier about what her purpose may have been in sending that email. Of course, I am not her and I don't know what was in her mind. Neither do you. The earlier commenter was saying that she could have had no other purpose than the one they wished to attribute to her. I was pointing out an alternative explanation.Delete
"I was pointing out an alternative explanation."Delete
Ha. We're supposed to be having a serious discussion.
Yours is not a serious response. There is nothing thoughtful or intellectually honest in your answer. You can't just assume that which you are asked to prove.
This is the level of debate this place has degenerated into.
You can't just assume that which you are asked to prove.Delete
Why doesn't your head just explode?
There are two pieces of the puzzle missing: the intent of the lane closers and whether Christie was one of them. People like you are sure you know the first and think that logic dictates the second. Other people want to wait until there's some actual evidence. The difference between the two is not thoughtfulness or intellectual honesty.
Deadrat, thanks for jumping in here with your misrepresentations of what I am saying and your verdict on what I am sure of. I don't suppose you even see the irony in your lecturing me about jumping to conclusions.Delete
The issue here that we've been discussing is the fact that the "traffic study" ruse was blown out of the water once Bridget Kelly's email to Wildstein was revealed. Pay attention. Care to comment on that?
Our ignorant anonymous commenter speculates that Kelly wrote that email , "Because she was interested in the answer to the question the study was meant to address."
I'm sure Bridget Kelly is interested in a lot of things, but the issue here is that she has NO FUCKING AUTHORITY in Port Authority matters.
Please mm. If you are so modest as to not capitalize your nym, don't criticize the quality of debate then engage in upper case profanity.Delete
That is the kind of thing that allows the other tribe to criticize your tribe and call every member a troll.
Please remember the team. Er, tribe.
She would have to have some authority to order Wildstein to do a study. What she actually said was "Time for some traffic problems..." That isn't an order to do anything. You can read that into the statement but other things may be read into it too.Delete
You cannot have this both ways. If she speaks for Christie then she has authority. If she has no authority, you cannot say she is Christie's voice. If she uses information produced by traffic studies, so has no authority but she is a stakeholder and studies are done for stakeholders, not for the amusement of traffic engineers. But she doesn't speak authoritatively. She doesn't say "start the study" or "get going on that plan we discussed" or "Boss says he wants that problem handled now" does she? It would be so much easier if she had been clearer, wouldn't it?
Anonymous 11:04 AM:Delete
If you're trying to say something, you're going to have to speak English.
Never mind. I'm done with trying to untangle your scatterbrained incoherent thoughts.
Perhaps you don't know what "irony" means or perhaps my position is unclear to you. The former can't be my fault, but the latter might be. Since I'm not jumping to conclusions, there's no irony in my lecturing you on doing so.
I'm one of those who's withheld judgment on two critical points, namely Christie's involvement and the intent of the lane closers. On other issues, I think the evidence is clear, and I'll bet you concur.
Christie's staff, notably Bridge T. Kelley, were up to their eyeballs in setting the fiasco in motion. Wildstein pushed the plan to its three-day fiasco. In this, they were complicit in an improper and reckless operation, which they effected with a breathtaking arrogance and disregard.
I want to know why they did it. Intent classifies the crime. What degree of politicide was this? Third (recklessness), second (depraved indifference), or first (premeditated)? It's one thing if they set out to punish the mayor of Fort Lee or the Democratic majority leader in the New Jersey senate. It's another if they tried to influence the financing for various private developments. It's yet another if they wanted to curry favor with Republican suburbs. All of these things have been suggested.
Notice that nobody claims that there was a "real" traffic study, in the sense of something planned by traffic engineers and approved through the normal channels. Wildstein supposedly collected and examined some data, enough anyway to conclude that tying up Fort Lee for hours cleared the morning traffic jam on the bridge 45 minutes early. If the lane closings were political revenge, then it's likely that such data collection, if it actually took place, was for show, a "ruse or a hoax" to quote TDH, to give plausible deniability. But we still don't know the why.
I take your point that Bridge T. Kelley had in your impassioned words "NO FUCKING AUTHORITY" in PA matters, and I think your naivete in this matter is adorable. No, really. Simply adorable. In theory the PA is supposed to a disinterested public servant administering important pieces of NY/NJ infrastructure. In practice, it has been politicized on both sides of the Hudson River, and it is routinely used for patronage and political maneuvering. The Governor's staff and the Governor's man on the payroll wielded power that was routine.
You may add that last to the list of sins, but it doesn't tell us about Christie's involvement or why the lanes were shut down.
I thought my meaning was pretty clear.
Addressing me, you wrote: "People like you are sure you know the first and think that logic dictates the second."
You don't know me. I don't recall confiding in you what I am "sure of" about concerning this scandal. You have no "evidence" to support that statement. The only thing I'm sure about is that there was no study in any way shape or form. And with each passing day the evidence coming out just reinforces my certainty.
And then you turn around and wag your finger at me and lecture me about jumping to conclusions. That's ironic.
True, I don't know you or your innermost thoughts. I do, however, take you at your word, or rather your words. You take offense at being told that you jump to conclusions, and then you immediately jump to a conclusion about the traffic study or "study," claiming that non-existent evidence, imparted daily, supports your leap.
Is there an English word for "doubly ironic"?
You may, of course, turn out to be correct and, as TDH points out, any study may yet be shown to be a ruse or a hoax. You're welcome to your guess, but why not dismount your high horse until then?
And we return full circle.
The study ruse was demolished the minute Kelly's email was made public. That is when the shit hit the fan and Christie threw her under the bus and became real sad over being betrayed by people who worked for him. That is when everybody started lawyering up and clamming up. This is evidence.
The fact that no "study" has to this day been produced is evidence. The fact that the engineers and the Director of the Port Authority said there was no study is evidence. The fact that PA cops were telling citizens false information - to blame the Mayor of Fort Lee - during the 4 days of traffic jams is evidence. A "study" that turns out to be a ruse or a hoax is not a study, it is a ruse or a hoax.
Bridget Kelly has no plausible or implausible role in ordering PA officials to commence with their traffic inducing "study". That is evidence.
You can't just scramble to assemble a few page powerpoint slide show and call it a study. Words have meaning. Just like people who don't understand science can't call creationism a "theory", so political hack David Wildstein can't call what he produced a study. That is evidence.
Do you get off on being such a smug, pompous ass condescending and patronizing to anonymous commenters?
And by the way, deadrat, I did notice how you completely evaded the point that you're a hypocrite for saying, "People like you are sure you know the first and think that logic dictates the second." without producing any evidence to back that up. Physician heal thyself.Delete
So who do you think will be "almost killed" this time because of Matthews conduct?ReplyDelete
Or, if you prefer, why does anything about this post have anything to do with Pat Buchanan's addled brother?
Question 1 is for fans of the blog.
Question 2 is for people accused of being trolls by people who answer Question 1.
One should ask Question No. 2 of Bob Somerby. After all, he begins this very post by referencing Matthews' behavior of 15 years ago, holding Matthews entirely responsible for the behavior of Pat Buchanan's brother.Delete
Then he takes it one step further and blames Matthews, not George W. Bush, for the wars that led to the deaths "all over the world."
For want of a nail...Delete
I thought the war was caused by people who believed Sadaam weapons of mass destruction.Delete
You know, Bush, Cheney, and Somerby.
Hey, don't gloat. Just because no WMDs have been found to date, Somerby still could be surprised if none are ever found.Delete
After all, it's possible. It's never been disproved on a journalistic basis.
Who's gloating? Since, as you note, it has not been disproven, it must be continually mentioned.Delete
Yes, indeed. It's only been 11 years. Those WMDs could still turn up any day now.Delete
And boy, won't all those liberal rubes be forced to eat crow. They can't say Bob didn't warn them!
Please stop pretending that THD's comments about premature gloating at the start of the war mean that he's still waiting for WMDs.Delete
Some thoughts about language deadrat. Since no weapons were found, how could it be premature?Delete
And since opposition to the war by those Bob derisively called "antiwar types," a right wing linguistic stereotype from the days Bob was such a person himself, was sincere how can you characterize them as "gloating'?
Finally, since Bob said he would be "surprised" if WMD were not found, don't you think, given Bob's regular call for liberals to acknowledge what the press did in the War on Gore, that he acknowledge what he and other
believers in the Bush excuse for unprovoked conflict
did to enable the death of thousands?
"THD's comments about premature gloating at the start of the war"Delete
Deadrat, why don't you ever look things up before you shoot your fat keyboard off?
"TDH's (my how we want to de-personalize!) comments" came AFTER "mission accomplished" was declared, not "at the start of the war."
Now one would think that since the prime objective (or at least the one we were sold) was to eliminate Saddam's huge stockpile of WMDs before he started selling them off to al Qaeda, that the first order of business would be to find and destroy this stockpile.
After all, Colin Powell himself went to the U.N. with pictures with arrows and circles showing exactly where this stockpile was, since Hans Blix and the U.N. inspection team was too inept to find it themselves.
By the time Bob issued his warning to "anti-war types," and expressed his future "surprise" if no weapons were ever found, it had dawned on the rest of the thinking world that Bush had been lying through his teeth.
By then, of course, even Bush stopped talking about WMDs, and suddenly the mission became to remove Saddam from power and bringing democracy to the Mideast at gunpoint, one nation at a time.
And who does Somerby continue to blame for this fiasco? Bush, the guy who did it?
Nope, all the blame falls upon all those meanies in the media who said bad things about his buddy, Al.
I think we should all just call him Bob. I am sure a generation of black Baltimore children fondly remember him as Mr. Somerby, but we should just call him Bob. I do and I shall.Delete
1. The war was a month old when TDH made his comment. That's a short time to search a country the size of Iraq. Saddam had ample time to disperse and hide WMDs if he had owned them.
2. I was an "anti-war type," and I took no offense at the label. Perhaps I should lean to read intent from words on a screen. One type of opposition came from the left; another from libertarians like Ron Paul. You're looking for insult where none exists.
3. I find absolutely no evidence that TDH's warning indicated that he believed that Bush had a valid excuse for a war that killed thousands. "The dead stare up from the ground" is his ongoing rebuke to those who enabled Bush to get to the White House. This isn't a blog about the Worst President Ever and his destructive policies at home and abroad. It's about the coverage of things like the WPE's policies. Until you get that straight, you're gonna believe nonsense about what TDH believes.
The war started on 3/20/03. The TDH comment in question is dated 4/22/03. The war lasted 8 1/2 more years. By my calculation, the comment came a tad more than 1% of the way in. I'll stand by my "start of the war."
By the way, The WPE declared "Mission Accomplished" on 5/1/03. In other words, the TDH comment came before the WPE's declaration, not as you claimed, after.
When I comment on an entry, I refer to the author by his nom de blog, The Daily Howler aka TDH, and not by his given name. I do this deliberately to distinguish myself from those who know the man intimately, the ones who apparently know his mental state. I try to restrict myself to commenting on his statements, not his state of mind.
As much as I'm amused at your self-identification with the "rest of the thinking world," I fail to see the relevance of the rest of your comment. This blog is not about US foreign policy, so it's not about the abject failure and total disaster that was the two administrations of the WPE. Therefore it's not about Bush's responsibility for his disasters. It's mainly about the press and how they cover events foreign and domestic. Until you understand that you'll be as off base about this blog as your are about the timeline of the Iraq War.
Journalists have a responsibility to adhere to the ethics of their profession. That does not include saying untrue things about people to increase their ratings. When that leads addled people to commit extreme acts (which they might not have done had the truth been told), the injury is compounded.ReplyDelete
If this is not obvious to you, you might consider whether you fit into one of the personality disorders that have trouble empathizing with others, seeing right from wrong, applying conscience as a constraint to one's own actions, or seeing that people are not pawns to be manipulated for one's own gain. These are the personality problems that result in people spending time trolling websites. I wish I could believe you were asking these questions out of a genuine confusion, instead of visiting this site to dump on this blogger and those who find value in his posts.
Oh, climb off of that high horse and stop pretending there was any time in American history that journalism was ruled by "ethics."Delete
Good lordy, are Bob's children this naive?
In other words, the entire world is corrupt and everyone does bad things, so there is no point in complaining about malfeasance, on your part or on the part of journalists either. Anyone who complains is a _______ (fill in the blanks with some derogatory term). Spoken like a true sociopath, who believes that everyone else is just like them in their warped views of morality and interpersonal behavior.Delete
I'm saying grow up and don't expect the world to spoonfeed you. Use your brain and the resources provided by the Information Age that are unparalleled in human history.Delete
And by the way, are all these "unethical" journalists fooling YOU? Or are they only fooling all those other people who aren't nearly as intelligent and discerning as you are?
Right, you are saying that ethics and civility are things no one should care about (only a child cares about such things). Again, spoken like a sociopath. The textbook definition is that such people don't care about what concerns the rest of humanity. Conformance to ethics is for suckers without brains.Delete
I am not saying no one should care about ethics and civility.Delete
I just wish that those who preach it for others would practice it themselves.
And I got a big guffaw out of your very next sentence: "Again, spoken like a sociopath."
How civil of you! How ethical!
Yes, sociopaths, narcissists, Machiavellians and sadists do believe that others should follow the rules they exempt themselves from (by virtue of their superior intelligence, worldliness, etc).Delete
And exactly the point! Welcome to the Tribe of Trolls!Delete
We have Somerby consistently exempting himself from rules he demands of others, while constantly bemoaning the "rubes" of lesser intelligence than he that are led astray.
He also has a jones about younger females in particular who have better educations, better jobs and more money than he, but I will leave that to Bob and his shrink to figure out.
Yes, you have been diligently working to portray him that way. The rest of us don't buy it.Delete
Ah, so you speak for "the rest of us"! Well, let me clue you in, Mr. Spokesman! Of course you don't buy it. You only buy what Somerby is selling.Delete
Us = everyone who is not a troll.Delete
Remember people, some things are important and some are trivial.ReplyDelete
TV shows with moderate ratings spewing half-truths and discredited pseudo-facts = Trivial.
Attacking a puny blogger and his "fans" for thinking those TV shows merit correction = Important.
Perhaps you think that commenting on a puny blog is "important." I am under no such delusion. I am merely here for the sheer sport of it.Delete
Because annoying people is such fun! Spoken like a textbook troll, with no concern for other people (Machiavellian, narcissist, sadist, socipathic).Delete
We may have to tolerate your presence but we don't have to pretend you are normal.
By your humorless standards? I am glad not to be "normal."Delete
But go ahead. Whine some more. Machiavellian me is enjoying it so much!
It also tells me that Bob Fans are having a bad case of cognitive dissonance when all they can do is whine, cry and call names.
Now take a deep breath, have a nice little nap, come back later and read what Bob has to say, then use that "open mind" you are so proud of to realize he's playing you like a fool and a fiddle.
It isn't as much fun when people hurt you back, is it?Delete
Hurt? Over the Internet? I'm LMAO at you. Don't stop.Delete
Yes, laughing at people isn't sadistic or narcissistic or sociopathic at all.Delete
You are listening to "Sounds of Sock PuppetsDelete
Arguing Over Why They Ended Up On the Same Hand Instead of a Perfectly Good Pair of Feet."
Next on Small Thngs Considered....
Yes, I am sadistic, narcississtic AND sociopathic. How civil of you to point that out.Delete
And I am still LMAO at you.
Sounds pretty hollow from here.Delete
What is the sound of one hand clapping with two socks on it?Delete
This is not Zen. It is denial you can hear it at all and that if you were close enough to hear it that it would sound hollow,
Why didn't we get told where Mssrs. Katz and Kelly went to college?ReplyDelete
Where did you go to college? Oh, right, Troll U.Delete
Well, 3:07 Mr. Kelly is a graduate of Syracuse University.Delete
Kelly's work has won him a number of awards which include:
! Top columnist in America in 2004 by the National Association of Newspaper Columnist
! New Jersey Press Association named him “Journalist of the Year” in 2001
! New York Deadline Club prize
! Meyer Berger Award from Columbia University
! National Clarion Award
! New Jersey Library Association honored him for his columns in defense of the First Amendment in 2008
So, are you saying Chris Matthews was a bad influence on him? He clearly messed up in the quoted portions above. Or maybe he never gets fact-checked? Or perhaps he is now coasting on his laurels?Delete
To whom do you address that question? The original questioner? The person who answered? Or the smart alec troll pretending he or she wasn't oneDelete
Unfortunately 3:07 I cannot seem to find an institutional affiliation listed where Mr. Katz may have matriculated. He does appear to have won a number of awards before coming to WNYC. A book he has written about Chris Christie already has a presitigiousDelete
publisher. Perhaps he is part of the new wave of journalists so dumb they didn't even go to prestigious
OMB (Almost Got Somebody Are Dead)ReplyDelete
"Chris Matthews’ appalling conduct almost got somebody killed."
"People are dead all over the world because of the things Matthews did."
Need we say more about two posts demonstrationg BOB's consistent commitment to accusation-free journalism?
He doesn't say he is against accusers. Go back and read the post.Delete
Go back and read our comment. The only thing we said someone said was said about ourselves.Delete
Again, I ask the question from the last post. If some mentally ill person read here that Chris Matthews was responsible for the War in Iraq and made an attempt on Matthews' life (God forbid!) should Somerby hold himself responsible?Delete
If you are planning such and hoping to pin it on Somerby, it won't work. Ask yourself why and you'll have the answer to your question.Delete
Somerby is the one who wants to blame Chris Matthews for the acts of Hank Buchanan.Delete
But thank you for answering the question. And yes, I agree wholeheartedly. It is ridiculous for Somerby to blame Matthews for the acts of a mentally ill person.
And it is even more ridiculous that he is still doing it 15 years later.
Seems to me he is blaming Chris Matthews for the acts of Chris Matthews and claiming that these led to what Buchanan did. I assume he'll explain why tomorrow.Delete
I doubt you'll care, but there is a difference between blame (which has moral or legal connotations) and cause and effect.
I see. Matthews caused Hank Buchanan to do what he did, but he's not blaming Matthews for it.Delete
Such knots these human pretzels twist themselves into.
If you bump into someone and spill their drink, does it make a difference whether you did it on purpose or accidentally? How hard is that to understand?Delete
The two conditions are not mutually exclusive. Just because Matthews is an idiot, and I wholeheartedly concur, that does not mean that Christie ISN'T a thug and a crook. Because the alternative is that he is the dumbest, most isolated and incompetent "executive" since anyone ever used that term. He was not marketed as "dumb, isolated and incompetent," but "hands-on."ReplyDelete
As the old Certs commercial went, "Stop! You're both right!"
Actually, there are three conditions co-existing.Delete
1. Matthews is an idiot.
2. Christie is a thug. Or an idiot. ("Crook or schnook" as Paul Begala put it.)
3. Somerby is off on yet another disconnected rant over a grudge he can't give up for going on 16 years.
What makes Matthews an idiot?Delete
Sorry -- I thought you were talking about Michaels. I understand why Matthews is an idiot.Delete
Matthews is insane.ReplyDelete
"Chris Matthews’ appalling conduct almost got somebody killed."ReplyDelete
Matthews is lucky he was not sued for wrongful almost death.
The guild behavior did not stop with Matthews. The press erred for bringing up the name of the poor man with mental issues and associating him with his brothers. I am just glad Bay wasn't mentioned. And what was Pat thinking continuing to work with Matthews at MSNBC all those years after what he did to his brother?
What was Pat thinking? How about "My left pocket is full of money but I still have some room in my right pocket."ReplyDelete
"Back to Matthews: Why is this horrible person still on the air, assisted by devoted caregivers?"ReplyDelete
Gee, I don't know, Bob. How would a mentally ill person read that question?
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